• Assassin's Creed Uprising #6 Transfer Annotations 

    Isu Codices, Volume 3: Catching up with “Assassin’s Creed”

    By | August 7th, 2017
    Posted in Annotations | % Comments

    With the end of “Assassin’s Creed: Reflections” last month, this month’s Isu Codices will delve into only “Assassin’s Creed: Uprising.”

    New Concepts

    Given the nature of the secret Assassin-Templar-Instrument War, along with the sheer length it has had, reaching as far back as at least the time of Cleopatra VII Philopator in Ptolemaic Egypt, it is perhaps not surprising that romance has brewed throughout its millennia-long history, both within each side, across battle lines, and especially completely outside of the conflict altogether. Considering the relative lack of direct attention given to the Templar Order, there is very little information on the original allegiances of romantic partners. However, we do have a sizable amount of information on the subject of love in the franchise regardless.

    Couples amongst the Assassins have been seen at various times, though less commonly than Assassins marrying outside of the Brotherhood. In the Victorian Age, the British Dame Evie Frye fell in love with Indian Assassin Jayadeep Mir, a.k.a. Sir Henry Green, and seemed to still be together with him twenty years after his proposal. By the late 20th century, William Miles and his own wife, both members of the global Assassin Brotherhood, had a son named Desmond. Most recently, Arend Schut married Harlan Cunningham, both of them being members of the underground Brotherhood of the 21st century.

    Though unlikely, the star-crossed lovers dynamic of a romance between an Assassin and a Templar is not unheard of. As early as the late 12th and early 13th centuries, Levantine Assassin Mentor Altaïr Ibn-La’Ahad married Levantine Templar Maria Thorpe. Centuries later, during the French Revolution of the late 18th century, Paris was host to Assassin Arno Dorian’s shared love with Templar Élise de la Serre, to the eventual doom of them both.

    Far more common seems to be the idea of a relationship outside of the conflict altogether. From Ezio Auditore da Firenze and Edward Kenway on the Assassin side to Juhani Otso Berg on the Templar side, the more stable (though at times still dangerous) relationships seem to be those divorced from the war altogether, though it can ultimately lead people to become part of it nonetheless.

    Methodological Differences

    A key component of how differently the Assassins operate from the Templars is, aside from their ideologies, in their most basic methodology. In effect, it is essentially a difference of quality versus quantity, similar to the “many soldiers against a single hero” trope from a vast multitude of fictional settings.

    The Assassin Brotherhood tends to assign a single person to a mission. The more competent members seems to be fully capable of fulfilling an objective without any additional Assassins coming in, enough that these people actually gather more members to their cause by their sheer effectiveness in saving others from oppression. For higher-ranking members, especially leaders and/or Mentors from a particular branch of the Brotherhood, a group of Assassins are somewhat more common, around three or four.

    On the other hand, the Templars seem to act in groups, supported by armies. They are more likely to throw a group of less trained people at a foe, only fighting back personally when absolutely necessary or sure they have enough of an upper hand.

    This difference can be seen most easily when it comes to Haythem Kenway’s trip to the Americas in 1754. While he used elements of stealth in dealing with an Assassin at one point, Kenway opted to bring a group of men with him over going completely alone. This is contrasted with the Assassin sent to kill him en route to the “new world,” Louis Mills, who is never with another member of the Brotherhood and utilizes his stealth far more than social and monetary advantages, only revealing his identity when making his attempt to assassinate Kenway in the first place.

    This mentality is important in establishing an outsider as a member of the Assassins in this month’s “Assassin’s Creed: Uprising.” Nobby Clarke came from London and gets on the good side of the Spanish Assassins by noting his personal, solo annihilation of the Templar cell in Tallinn, Estonia. While this level of destruction is uncommon, it isn’t entirely unlikely for an Assassin, and so is actually enough to get him into the branch’s good graces despite a rocky start.

    Continued below


    Not Pictured: Vomit
    The Animus relies upon synchronizing with the ancestral memories being observed. Improper actions can lead to ejection from the simulation, also known as “desynchronization.” In the games, the players desynchronize by failing to complete specific objectives with specified parameters, or being killed, and desynchronization is essentially a “game over” state, and apparently causes a headache to those who suffer from it. The comics and other expanded universe media do not have the necessity of a player, and so use the synchronization issue somewhat differently.

    Charlotte de la Cruz is the most common sufferer of desynchronization, for one reason or another. Not only does she experience a bad headache, but she also has extreme nausea, to the point of, on at least two occasions, actually vomiting immediately after exiting to her modern era.

    However, her own reasons for desynchronization are not solely related to avoiding the way forward set by her ancestors or even dying. Instead, her time in the Grey and exchange of memories with Juno seems to have corrupted her, making proper use of the Animus difficult and dangerous. Dutch Assassin Arend Schut Cunningham identifies at least part of Charlotte’s condition as similar to the idea that her “parietal lobes have been digitally bashed together.” The parietal lobe of the brain is most commonly associated with such tasks as language processing, spatial sense, navigation, and touch, in addition to other responsibilities.

    Could her difficulties be as dangerous as, or even more dangerous than the infamous Bleeding Effect? Only time can tell how badly she will be hurt, inside and out.

    New Issues
    Assassin’s Creed: Uprising #6
    As in many times of war, the Spanish Assassins of the late 1930s were naturally skeptical about people who allegedly come to their aid. Judging from the dynamic of the cell Ignacio Cardona hailed from, they seem to have worked as a collective entity of approximately four people, though each of their ultimate specialties remains uncertain, compared to other Assassin cells like that of William Miles in 2012. A relatively minor detail seems to be the apparent romance between Ignacio and his fellow Assassin, Glaucia Acosta.

    The arrival of Nobby Clarke and the reactions to said arrival indicate that, much like the networks stretching back as far as the Renaissance, if not earlier, the different Assassin branches had a kind of communication network between them, with the Spanish calling the British for help. The exact size of the British Brotherhood in that era is uncertain, but given that Ignacio is so upset about not getting a dozen of them, the British Assassins likely have a significantly larger force than the Spanish.

    When Charlotte desynchronizes, her nausea again comes to the surface, with her vomiting right on the Animus instantly after being thrust out of the system. She seems to be determined to keep going, but it’s unclear how much more she can keep at this with her mind still adversely affected by the antagonistic Isu Juno.

    Advantage: Otso Berg
    Otso Berg’s analysis of the 21st century Assassin Brotherhood is regretfully pretty accurate. For one, the Assassins are not telling Charlotte what they know about her ancestor’s apparent work with a Templar Black Cross for sake of not wanting to distract her from trying to find the Koh-i-Noor. This decision is, of course, ignoring the fact that if she finds out on her own, it is likely to distract her much more. That aside, Galina Voronina torturing Instrument Guernica Moneo for information on Juno’s location isn’t really helping their image either. More and more, it becomes hard for them to claim that they are inherently better than the Templars, especially when the only one with them, the most recent of the Black Crosses, is a lot calmer and nicer, but still called such things as a “totalitarian sociopath.” Of course, Galina has her own personal reasons for her assault, but it still doesn’t help their image to Berg.

    The Assassins’ practices of keeping secrets from one another are not kept to the mid-2010s alone. Back in the Spanish Civil War, different members of the Spanish Assassins were undecided on which group in the “anti-fascists” they should ally themselves toward, between the anarchists and the communists. Dwight believed in working with the anarchists to create something new, while Miguel Carasso instead thought that the appropriate action was to ally with the government through the Communists as a more heavily armed and well-stocked option.

    Continued below

    A bit suspicious...
    On the other hand, Nobby’s behavior throughout the issue all leads toward one likely conclusion: he was not an Assassin at all, but rather a member of the Instruments of the First Will, if not an Assassin who has been manipulated by Juno but not yet joined the Instruments. While Glaucia, Dwight, and Miguel tested his combat skills, he espoused the very un-Assassin idea of the group forming leadership in the chaos to fight off the fascists, allying the communists and the anarchists under a single anti-fascist banner. While the Assassins do have their own leaders, they only very rarely attempt to become overall leaders of society itself, an effort that generally fails or is short-lived. The words were so opposed to Assassin ideals that Glaucia had to say that she had those very reservations, even if she did believe that some actual leadership was ultimately needed. On a side note, Nobby’s attire of black with red trimmings was similar to some high ranking Templars, such as the outfit of late 1700s Colonial Templar Shay Cormac, temporarily Edward Kenway’s Templar attire, Black Cross Albert Bolden, and even Otso Berg himself.

    Warning: Do Not Use If Male
    In theory, these verbal and visual clues would more likely paint him as a Templar mole. However, his possession of the Koh-i-Noor, coupled with his attempt to get Ignacio to use it and be controlled by it, seems to give the most solid indication that he was not allied with either side, but rather an agent of Juno herself. It is highly likely that he was aware of the fact that a man could not safely use the Koh-i-Noor, as he seemed to grin, pleased, as Ignacio wrought destruction to the best of his ability with the Piece of Eden, even as his eyes and nose bled, along with likely other orifices, followed by losing consciousness.

    Albert Bolden?
    Someone, seemingly Albert Bolden, was apparently watching the failed use of the Koh-i-Noor from a distant rooftop. Could this be the way through which Ignacio and Albert work together, by the latter saving the former’s life?

    Speaking of saving a life, the violent rejection from the Koh-i-Noor seems to have had a volatile effect on Charlotte, who is biting her own tongue nearly off in what appears to be a seizure, spitting blood all the while. My’shell Lamarr seems to be her only hope to survive, and if Arend doesn’t let her through to do so, she is likely to be forever lost in the simulation much like Clay Kaczmarek and very nearly Desmond Miles, if not just killed outright.

    Judging from the solicitation for the seventh issue (likely to come September 6) at the end of this one, Charlotte’s deteriorating condition won’t allow her another trip in the Animus, at least not anytime soon. Instead, Otso Berg himself seems to be prepared to take the plunge, and perhaps finally discover what really happened to Albert Bolden after that fateful night in Shanghai of 1927.

    //TAGS | Isu Codices

    Gregory Ellner

    Greg Ellner hails from New York City. He can be found on Twitter as @GregoryEllner or over on his Tumblr.


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